Skill in the Pool of Dreams

Two men have been working on the pool for most of this week. They seem to share two features: a love of traditional mariachi music and major skill in working with stone tiles. It’s been a real pleasure watching them work, as well as listening to the music. It’s real loud, but since I am also fond of that music, I have not complained. There’s some fine tuba playing going on in those songs.

Early progress – they were fitting the inserts in the holes.

This post is about the tile work, though. One of the guys spends all day using the wet saw to cut the blocks of bullnose-edge natural limestone for the pool edging, as I’ve mentioned before. Lee worries, because they are not wearing masks. That’s pretty legitimate. I don’t stand around outside very long when the saw is going. I don’t want shards of limestone and quartz in my lungs (the stone is very shiny in spots).

Not sure what this is, but it has a nice circle in it.

The guy has made dozens of smaller tiles for one edge, and medium for the other edge. Meanwhile, the other guy has been first dry fitting and then cementing in the stone. He uses leftover glass tiles from other pools as spacers. That’s a good way to use them, I think. Lee is worried about there being so much space for grout, but we’ll see if it causes an issue.

It has to be hard to get these all lined up on the curve. It sure looks pretty.

I think the tile is gorgeous. It blends in with the cool limestone the house is clad in, and looks really natural, which will help the pool not look like some garish thing plopped in the back yard. The accent tile under the limestone also looks pretty natural. It’s beautifully glazed ceramic tile squares, and they will look pretty, but still fit in with the ranch vibe.

Ready for installation.

I’m enjoying some of the fine touches they’re putting in the tilework, such as the circle cutouts for the filter outlets, or whatever those will be called. I sure hope they have handles. They installed the baskets in there, too, so I feel like the pool’s coming along.

The two-holer.

And on the edges of the hot tub/spa, they put a nice triangle accent. That’s going to look so pretty next to the waterfall.

Edge of spa, with decoration.

I’m looking forward to watching more of their artistry in the next week or two (and having their music in the background while I work). I’m not in any hurry to rush these craftsmen to finish their work. It will be like having artwork that you can cool off in, once the pool is done! I won’t even be sad that it gets done after the weather cools off (we can still use the hot tub, anyway).

And in Horse News

I just have to brag on Apache and Aragorn. Today they were both on their best behavior and really showed how much progress they are making. Each of them was easy to ride and not all nerved out at all, even though we rode all over the field behind our house, where Aragorn had never been and Apache hadn’t been in a long time.

It was like it used to be when Sara and I would ride Apache and Spice, before Apache got lame and squirrely. The weather was beautiful, and we could relax, look at the trees and plants, and ask our horses to move around gracefully.

Aftermath of a long, fun ride.

In the end, Apache really wanted to go “home” over to Sara’s place. Poor guy. I totally understand. But, even when he tried to tell me what he wanted, I was able to gently convince him to go back to his pens. I have no complaints about that horse right now. What a pleasant change!

A very wet and tired horse

Then, since he was all hot, I decided to rinse Apache off. I didn’t have to tie him up or anything. He just stood there and enjoyed his cool-off, then turned around for the other side. He didn’t move off until I took off his halter, and then he just went off to graze and drip. He’s a good buddy.